The Crown has signed an Agreement in Principle towards settling the historical Treaty of Waitangi claims of the Ngāi Tai ki Tāmaki iwi, Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Minister Christopher Finlayson announced today.
Ngāi Tai ki Tāmaki suffered significant Treaty breaches including land loss through raupatu and significant Crown taking of ‘surplus lands’ from old land claims such as the Fairburn Purchase that left them effectively landless from the 1880s. Today Ngāi Tai ki Tāmaki retain less than 1% of their original land.
“This agreement will help right the wrongs of the past and restore the Treaty relationship between Ngāi Tai ki Tāmaki and the Crown,” Mr Finlayson said.
The Agreement in Principle sets out historical, cultural, financial and commercial redress to settle the historical Treaty of Waitangi claims of Ngāi Tai ki Tāmaki in Tāmaki Makaurau (Auckland), who are also part of Ngā Mana Whenua o Tāmaki Makaurau (the Tāmaki Collective) and are in separate negotiations in respect of their interests in the Hauraki region.
“The Agreement in Principle includes financial redress of $11.5 million plus interest from signing date, and cultural redress over several sites of significance including on the motu (islands) in the Hauraki Gulf, Musick Point in East Tāmaki and the Ness Valley in Clevedon,” he said.
Ngāi Tai ki Tāmaki will also have the option to purchase several Crown properties, including New Zealand Defence houses in Papakura.
The Crown and Ngāi Tai ki Tamaki will now start negotiations towards a Deed of Settlement. Once a draft Deed is completed, it will be put to the iwi for a vote. If ratified, the Deed will be signed and legislation introduced into Parliament to implement the settlement.
The Agreement in Principle is an important step towards concluding Treaty settlements in Auckland and towards the wider goal of completing the Treaty settlement process.